As things begin to open up in some countries and the worst of the pandemic seems to be behind us, parents are looking forward to having new places to take their kids and keep them occupied for a few hours. Only a few months ago commentators were bemoaning the end of the shopping mall as we knew it, given the all-encompassing influence of e-commerce. Besides, most shopping malls or centers have been closed for close to two years given the pandemic and lockdown regulations, which was the death knell for a number of places. Lots of these op-eds were written too soon though, and the shopping center is coming back with a vengeance. With them, child-friendly attractions will make a comeback, much to the relief of many, many caretakers who feel fatigued and need to run errands without a problem. There are a few sources who may argue against the necessity of making shopping centers kid-friendly, but the following should provide a few compelling reasons as to why they are so essential.

The Kids Have Fun and You Get Some Free Time

Of course, parents love their kids, would do anything for them, and so on. And yet this pandemic has taken a toll on most families, especially the moms. Child-friendly attractions in shopping centers are a way of offering you a bit of free time for the adults to be able to concentrate on other things. So, the kids can have fun in a self-contained environment under the supervision of adults, but mom has a chance to run to the local bookstore, and sip her coffee in peace. Or, you may need to run an errand, and you know that shopping with kids who want anything and everything in front of them is murder on your wallet. So, again, having them preoccupied with a child-friendly attraction is a great way for you to be able to get the work you need to be doing, while also offering something fun for the young ones to do.

Throw In a Bit of Education

This comment may seem flippant, but in reality, different kinds of games and play centers for kids include an educational component that helps to refine their motor skills, while cultivating other excellent learning habits. The commercial playground manufacturer and supplier at says that kid-friendly attractions in public places also help to get children to exercise their social skills, allowing them to make friends outside their immediate circle. This is crucial when considering the development of a child and their ability to “mingle” with others in their age group, while effectively communicating their thoughts and needs to others. So, playtime at the mall seems completely devoid of educational value on the surface, but nothing could be further from the truth. If done right, it can be an excellent opportunity to learn, further develop cognitive abilities, and of course, make new friends in their age group outside of the usual social circles of school and family.

Take a Breather

A shopping center should ostensibly have more than one kid-friendly attraction on its premises. Maybe one offers a fun lunch with access to their favorite games. Another could be an educational center wherein they can find some cool books, attend storytime, or see beloved cartoon characters interacting with them in person. Parents should have more than one option to take their kids to and cater to their needs, especially kids belonging to different age groups. For example, younger toddlers may enjoy a place where they can simply customize and play with a cuddly toy bear before purchasing. Slightly older kids may want to have lunch while also playing a few arcade games with their friends. In any case, there should be plenty of options that offer different things for different kids to be able to occupy their time while parents can take a breather. An exhausted caretaker may want to find a fun place to take their kids and make sure they have access to the fun but nutritious meals while they charge their phones and get a chance to clear their heads. Taking a breather while in the midst of an exhausting day at the mall should be an option for any parent, and good kid-friendly attractions help in that way.

A shopping center isn’t just a place where you can go grab a new shirt, and leave – although it can be that, too. It’s a place to grab lunch, meet friends, and have your kids make new friends. It used to be derided as a place of empty commerce, but it’s become the site of social interaction and fun, something everyone realized as soon as it was taken away during an exceptionally difficult moment in time.